As the end of the year approaches, you may find yourself wondering: How will I watch the New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square? Whether you plan to watch from home or venture out in-person, here’s what you need to know.
Editor’s Note: This post will be updated as more information about how the omicron variant is affecting in-person gatherings in New York City becomes available.
Those who prefer to catch the Waterford Crystal-covered ball drop from home can tune in to a stream of the celebration starting at 6 p.m. Eastern, when the orb will burst to life and begin its ascent to the top of One Times Square. The celebration will also be broadcast across networks, including ABC, NBC, FOX and CNN.
Hosted by actor Jonathan Bennett, who will be joined by Regal Cinema host Jeremy Hassell, the affair will include performances from singer-songwriter KT Tunstall and more.
You can watch the celebration below.
In November, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and the Times Square Alliance announced that this year’s celebration would welcome back in-person spectators after last year’s crowd-free countdown.
As the omicron variant rapidly spreads throughout New York City, prompting Broadway shows and restaurants to close, plans for a full-throttle celebration in Times Square have shifted. On Dec. 23, de Blasio announced that the event’s capacity would be scaled back from approximately 58,000 to 15,000, with masks and proof of full vaccinations required.
“New Yorkers have stepped up tremendously over the past year — we are leading the way on vaccinations, we have reopened safely, and every day we work toward building a recovery for all of us,” de Blasio said in a statement. “There is a lot to celebrate and these additional safety measures will keep the fully vaccinated crowd safe and healthy as we ring in the New Year.”
Those over the age of 5 who wish to join in on festivities in Times Square must provide proof of full COVID-19 vaccination and a valid photo ID. Revelers under the age of 5, who are currently not eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, will need to be accompanied by a vaccinated adult. Those unable to receive the vaccine due to a disability must provide proof of a negative COVID PCR test taken within 72 hours of the festivities. All guests must wear a mask.
More information about the Times Square ball drop can be found on the official Times Square website.
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Top Image: Times Square New Year's Eve ball.